May 31st 11am – 12PM Coffee & Conversation with Norma Schwartz

You are invited to meet the Artist, Norma Schwartz this Friday Morning from 11am -1PM. You’ll have the opportunity to see her powerful exhibition, shape of memories, meet her and hear her discuss her work in this salon style event. Norma’s exhibition runs through June 9th.

Biography and Artist Statement

Norma Schwartz was born in Argentina at the end of the World War II and the atrocities of the event have been present throughout her life. After starting her practice as a psychoanalyst and raising a family, she emigrated to Spain in the 1970’s.  In Spain, she became involved in women’s issues from a psychoanalytic perspective and at the same time explored artistic languages of expressions. She moved to the United States in the mid 1990’s while keeping her practice as a psychoanalyst and pursing her new passion: sculpture.

“As a sculptor, developing techniques, exploring new materials, creating new ways of inhabiting a three-dimensional space, realizing the importance of light, gave me the opportunity to express what for me was impossible to express in a different language; a language with no words.

The teaching of psychoanalysis is also present in my work, and reflects, when naming each piece, a need to make a mark with a word that symbolized my curiosity and passion for the theoretical knowledge.

December 12th, 2018 6-8PM Artist Talks with Travis Childers and Lisa Noble

We are very pleased to invite you to an evening of artists talks with Lisa Noble and Travis Childers next Wednesday evening December 12th, 2018 6-8pm. Lisa and Travis have distinct visions where they explore memory and our experience of the day to moment.

You can learn more about Travis Childers and Lisa Noble by visiting their About the Artists Page.

The address for the Schlesinger Center is 4915 East Campus Drive, Alexandria, VA 22311. There will be parking available in the Visitor Parking Garage right across the Circle from the Schlesinger Center.

Questions and Answers : A Profile with Saya Behnam

Saya BenhamSay Behnam’s solo exhibition of paintings, Capturing the Vibrant, Transient and Eternal NOW is on display through November 4, 2018. We will be hosting a demonstration of the process that Saya uses to create her paints from plants, flowers, spices as well as stones and minerals next Tuesday October 30 12am – 2PM in the Forum Gallery of the Schlesinger Arts Center.

Please learn more Saya’s process with the Q&A profile below and plan to join us next Tuesday afternoon – 12am -2PM.

  1. At what point in your life did you realize that you were an artist?

From 13 or 14 years old. When I got so happy when copied an image from a cover magazine with a cheap watercolor box I had. I resisted considering fine art as a profession till many years after. I thought that cannot be considered as a real job.

  1. Was there a particular teacher that influenced you during your studies?

I had a teacher at age 18 who as my father cousin. His character influenced me a lot.

  1. Are there art historical influences that are particularly important to you?

Yes- I always was so impressed by the colors of Persian rugs and Kilims and miniatures was wondering how they produced the natural colors.

  1. What is the starting point for your process?

For using natural colors: it was a total accident. One day drinking a hibiscus tea and by accident I split it on my white paper. I kept looking at the colors and how those were changing. I decided to give it a try at my studio . That was the starting point.

  1. You call your work co-creating with nature. Can you talk a little bit more about how you are co-creating with nature?

I believe all the colors I use are existing in even one flower or plant I use. I am just a transformer. Some one who knows how to take them out and arrange them on the paper. Most of the time when mix or apply the colors on the top of each other I get a new color that is not what it was before. I believe I am not the only creator of my work. It is already in the nature and we co-create it.

  1. Is there a particular color that speaks to you over other colors?

I am very attracted to shades of red to purple and blues.

7. When did you first start creating your own colors and what was your inspiration?

Since my work is abstract, my goal was how the colors I create compose, interact and work together as a whole.

  1. The surface that you are painting on with the natural colors feels important. Can you tell us more about the quality of the surface you paint on – i.e. the silk, cotton and handmade paper?

I realized natural colors prefer natural surface rather than chemically primed.

For example natural silk and cotton and paper are the best. I normally use them instead of primed canvas.

  1. Do other art forms such as literature or music influence you?

I love poetry. I do write poems from famous Persian poets  like Khayam, Hafiz and Rumi in my art  . Listening to music is a big part of my day. I daydream with it. I get inspiration, become happy, sad and calm.

  1. What advice would you give to a young artist that is just starting out?

If you feel art is a big part of your soul, don’t afraid going after it and follow it professionally. It won’t be easy, but since artists’ reward is internal you can hang out there even when you don’t get result immediately.

Thank you for your time and please see additional works from Saya at her website at https://www.sbehnam.com/

Questions and Answers with John D. Antone

John D. Antone’s solo exhibition, The Home Inside” runs through November 4th.

We pleased to announce that we are hosting a day time coffee and conversation next Monday, October 15th, 2018, 11am -12PM with John D. Antone. Please come out to meet him, view his works and join us in conversation.

Learn more about John tomorrow and plan to join us next Monday morning for a conversation with the Artists.

At what point during your life did you realize that you were an artist.?

Maybe artists are born….??

As I recall checking the “Art Major” box in my college application was the first commitment to being a “professional”  artist but much later and in reality rather recently, I realized my purpose in life is to be an artist.  Being an artist is related to curiosity in my opinion…..not a job.

How did your experiences at Virginia Commonwealth University and California Institute of the Arts impact your artistic development?

At VCU I decided to study “sculpture” because the Sculpture Department did not restrict sculpture to any working method.  Our critiques addressed:  concept, intent and effect.

At Cal Arts they talked about the audience….who is our audience?  This impressed me.  It did not mean commercial audience but who we imagined we wanted to present our work.

Times spent with other students was just as important as what happened in the classrooms. We were very lucky to be alive when there was such freedom.

  Was there a particular teacher that influenced you?

 Chuck Henry  -VCU

John Baldessari – California Institute of the Arts

Deborah Butterfeild – University of Wisconsin

Warren Moon – University of Wisconsin

Hardeu Keck – Rhode Island School of Design, Rome Campus, Italy

 How would you describe your creative process?

My creative process is something like play.

 What artistic movements inspire you? – They can be visual but also literary movements.

There is not a particular movement although I like art history a lot and literature is amazing. Art is an ancient language that repeats itself so I like to learn from the language of art.

One of my favorite authors is Samuel Beckett……

 

What is it about bronze that appeals to you creatively?

I like bronze because it is both a liquid and solid.

Describe the lost wax casting process?

  • The lost wax process is ancient.
  • Basically one makes a form in wax by direct or indirect means.
  • Then the wax model is placed in a mold.
  • It may be that the wax form need to be broken down into parts and reassembled later.
  • This mold with the wax model is heated and the wax evaporates.
  • Then melted bronze is heated and poured into the mold.
  • Then the mold is removed when bronze has cooled.
  • Parts are welded together.
  • Then the bronze is cleaned and made smooth to the touch.
  • Then color (patina) is applied to the finished bronze by heat and/or chemicals.

When are you working on an idea for a sculpture – how do you begin?

I begin with meditation.

What advice would you give to a young artist starting today?

I would say beware that art is dangerous and ask yourself: If you looked back on your life would you regret not doing what you love?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 22, 2018 2-4PM Art Reception Antone, Behnam and Jarzynski

We are very excited about our Fall Visual Art Receptions and we are looking forward to seeing you this Saturday, September 22nd from 2-4PM.

We have three solo exhibitions where each artists has a distinctive response to the natural world.

Hibiscus flower tea, with ink on paper created a beatuiful variation of purple to blue and red colors, with writing in Farsi says: “I am”, “ I am alive”, “ I live”, and using gold leaves

Capturing the Vibrant, Transient and Eternal Now: Paintings by Saya Behnam 

In the Forum, we are welcoming Saya Behnam with her paintings made from natural colors and painted on silk and paper.

 

The Home Inside: Sculptures by John D. Antone.

In the Fisher Art Gallery,  John D. Antone will be showing is delicate and inspiring scupltures created in bronze and ebony.

 

The Inscape of my Landscape: Paintings by Teresa Jarzynski

In the Passage Gallery, we are so very excited to be showcasing the oil landscape paintings of Teresa Jarzynski. Influenced by Luminism and the work of Corot, the are a lovely tribute to the natural world.

Jenny the Wu – Bring your own Lunch and Learn!

Students, Teachers and Staff and the DMV art community
Thursday September 6, 2018 12:30PM -1:30PM
Lunch and Learn with the artist Jenny Wu

Margaret W. & Joseph L. Fisher Art Gallery
Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center
Northern Virginia Community College – Alexandria Campus
4915 East Campus Drive
Alexandria VA 22311

A Sociology in Layers

Lunch and Learn with Jenny the Wu on her exhibit A SOCIOLOGY IN LAYERS at the Schlesinger Arts Center.

What do we mean when we call something Serious Play?

How do artists develop and come up with the ideas behind their work?

Grab a sandwich, and come down the hill to the Schlesinger Art Center and meet the artist Jenny the Wu.

Jenny Wu will be giving a behind the scenes – straight from the creative source talk about her and Michael Holt’s work in the interactive exhibit – A SOCIOLOGY IN LAYERS.

Biography

Jenny the Wu, like Winnie the Pooh, an artist and educator. She is the 2018 – 2020 Touchstone Foundation for the Arts Emerging Artist Fellow, and adjunct professor at American University and Marymount University.
Jenny Wu was born in Nanjing, China. She holds a B.A. from William Smith College in Studio Art as well as in Architectural Studies, and an M.F.A. in Studio Art from American University.

Her work has been exhibited in galleries and museums including Denise Bibro Fine Art, Katzen Museum, and Huntington Museum of Art. Wu has participated in numerous Artist-In-Residence programs across the country, and has been awarded fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center and the Pollock Krasner Foundation.”

Contact Information: Mary Welch Higgins
Gallery Director, Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center
Email: mhiggins@nvcc.edu
Phone: 703.575.4705

Conversation with Maroulla – Weds, April 18th, 12:30pm

Please join us for a special weekday conversation with sculptor, artist and current exhibiting artist Maroulla.

TIME: Wednesday, April 18th at 12:30PM

Maroulla’s dedication to her art form – marble and alabaster sculpture is expressed in the focused and passionate nature of her commitment to her art practice. This talk promises to be a engaging and enlightening for all participants. We hope that you can join us “In the Room” with Maroulla! For more about Maroulla’s work visit her ABOUT THE ARTIST page.

We meet on the second level of the Schlesinger Arts Center on the Alexandria Campus of Northern Virginia Community College at 12:30PM.  The address is 4915 East Campus Drive, Alexandria, VA 22311

If you are coming from off campus – There is paid parking – 2 dollars an hour – in the garage across the street from the center. We will have light refreshments. We look forward to seeing you!

Artists Speak with Raye Leith and Tanya Ziniewicz

We recently hosted our first joint Artists Speak event with artists Raye Leith and Tanya Ziniewicz. Both artists spoke about their art exhibits that have been on display in the Schlesinger Center this summer. Tanya’s show “Évoluer” was on display in the second-level Margaret W. & Joseph L. Fisher Art Gallery from July 29 to Sept. 11. Raye’s show “Blueprints” is on display in the upstairs Passage Gallery and first-level Forum Gallery through Sept. 18.

In case you missed this lively talk, here’s what the two artists had to say about their inspiration for their recent work, their motivation to continue to create in new and exciting ways and how history influenced their art.